Bennett & Bennett
Houston Drug Crime Lawyer
Since the war on drugs began a half century ago, drug charges have been one of the top tools that the government uses to put people in prison.
If you are accused of the possession, manufacture, delivery, or distribution of controlled substances—illegal drugs—in Houston or the surrounding counties, you need an experienced Houston drug-crime lawyer to fight for your rights and protect your future.
At Bennett & Bennett, our dedicated Houston drug-attorney team has the expertise and passion for defending clients against drug-related charges.
With a proven track record of success, we are the drug-crime lawyers Houston residents trust to navigate the complex state and federal legal systems and doggedly advocate on their behalf.
Don't face your drug charges alone – let our knowledgeable Houston drug-crime lawyers provide the support and guidance you need during this challenging time.
Criminal Lawyer for Drug Charges—Proudly Serving Houston and Surrounding Counties More Than 25 years
As criminal lawyers for drug charges, we have proudly served Houston, the surrounding counties, Texas, and the rest of the United States since 1995, building a strong reputation for excellence in drug-crime defense.
Our seasoned legal team understands the intricacies of drug laws and the impact that drug charges can have on your life.
We are committed to providing personalized, strategic representation to our clients, ensuring that their rights are protected every step of the way.
Whether you're facing a first-time offense or have extensive prior drug-related history, our experienced attorneys will work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome for your case.
Trust our expertise and dedication as we stand by your side during this critical time.
Defending Against Federal Drug Charges
Defending against federal drug crime charges can be a daunting task, but with the right legal representation, you stand a better chance of navigating the complex legal process and achieving a favorable outcome.
Federal drug charges are often more severe than state charges, with harsher penalties and mandatory minimum sentences. Federal law enforcement also uses tools that state agencies seldom use, such as wiretaps, polecams, and surveillance drones.
In this post, we will discuss the crucial aspects of defending against federal drug crime charges and the importance of having an experienced attorney on your side.
1. Understanding Federal Drug Laws: The first step in defending against federal drug charges is to understand the specific laws that apply to your case. Federal drug laws, such as the Controlled Substances Act, regulate the possession, distribution, and manufacturing of drugs. These laws are enforced by various federal agencies, including the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Your attorney should have a deep understanding of these laws and how they apply to your situation.
2. Building a Strong Defense Strategy: Defending against federal drug charges requires a comprehensive and well-planned defense strategy. This may involve challenging the legality of the search and seizure, disputing the quantity or type of drugs involved, or arguing that you were not aware of the drugs' presence. An experienced federal drug crime attorney will work closely with you to develop a defense strategy tailored to your specific circumstances.
3. Fighting for a Fair Trial: In federal drug cases, it's essential to ensure that your rights are protected throughout the legal process. This includes the right to a fair trial and the right to be represented by competent counsel. Your attorney should be skilled at navigating the federal court system and advocating for your rights at every stage of the case.
4. Negotiating a Plea Bargain: In some cases, it may be in your best interest to negotiate a plea bargain with the federal prosecutor. An experienced federal drug crime attorney can help you determine whether a plea agreement is the best option for your case and negotiate favorable terms on your behalf. It's important to remember that accepting a plea bargain may result in a reduced sentence or the dismissal of some charges, but it also requires you to plead guilty to certain offenses.
5. Preparing for Sentencing: If you are convicted of a federal drug crime, the sentencing process can be complex and highly dependent on the specific facts of your case. Your attorney should be well-versed in federal sentencing guidelines and be prepared to advocate for a fair and just sentence based on your unique circumstances.
Defending against federal drug crime charges is a challenging endeavor that requires the expertise and dedication of an experienced attorney. By understanding the complexities of federal drug laws, building a strong defense strategy, and fighting for your rights throughout the process, you stand a better chance of achieving a favorable outcome in your case.
If you or a loved one is facing federal drug charges, it's essential to seek the guidance of a skilled federal drug crime attorney as soon as possible.
Expert Federal Drug Crime Attorneys Serving Houston
If you are facing federal drug charges in Houston, you need a team of expert federal drug crime attorneys on your side.
Navigating the complexities of the federal criminal justice system requires an attorney with extensive knowledge, experience, and a proven track record of success in handling federal drug cases.
Bennett & Bennett is committed to providing compassionate and strategic representation to clients facing federal drug charges. With years of experience and a thorough understanding of federal drug laws, our attorneys can help you build a strong defense to protect your rights, your freedom, and your future.
We handle a wide range of federal drug offenses, including but not limited to:
1. Drug trafficking and distribution
2. Drug manufacturing and cultivation
3. Drug conspiracy charges
4. Prescription drug fraud and diversion
5. Drug importation and exportation
6. Money laundering related to drug activities
When facing federal drug charges, the stakes are high, and the potential consequences can be severe, including lengthy prison sentences, substantial fines, and asset forfeiture.
Our Houston drug-crime attorneys are dedicated to providing personalized, results-driven representation to clients in need of strong legal advocacy.
We understand the importance of a thorough investigation, the development of a strategic defense plan, and the need for skilled negotiation or trial advocacy when necessary. Our attorneys will work closely with you to ensure that your rights are protected throughout the entire legal process.
If you or a loved one is facing federal drug charges in Houston, do not hesitate to contact our expert federal drug crime attorneys for a consultation.
We are prepared to fight for your rights and work tirelessly to achieve the best possible outcome in your case.
Drug Charges in Houston Can Lead to Serious Consequences!
There are less-serious drug crimes—possession of marijuana, for example, which is well on the way to being legal—and serious drug crimes that can destroy your future and put you in prison.
With some drug crimes, whether you would consider them serious or not depends on your individual circumstances.
For example, possession of THC (in the form of wax, oil, or edibles) is a state-jail felony. That is the least serious degree of felony in Texas, with a punishment range of six months to two years in jail.
Most first offenders charged with state-jail felonies can get probation if they want it; they are probably not going to be sentenced to jail.
But whether this is a serious offense for you may depend on how important your reputation is to you, and what the collateral consequences are of a conviction.
Drug charges are criminal offenses in Texas, and most people are much better off with no criminal history than with even a low-grade felony conviction.
More generally, though, a serious drug offense is typically characterized by factors such as the type and quantity of the controlled substance involved, the nature of the accused's actions, and the potential harm to society or individuals.
While the specific definition of a serious drug offense may vary by jurisdiction, common elements of such offenses usually include:
Drug trafficking or distribution: The sale, transport, or delivery of large quantities of controlled substances, often across state or national borders.
Manufacturing: The production or cultivation of illegal drugs, such as operating a methamphetamine lab or growing a large quantity of marijuana plants.
Repeat offenses: A history of prior drug convictions can elevate a current drug charge to a more serious level, leading to enhanced penalties.
Use of weapons or violence: The presence of firearms or the use of violence in connection with drug offenses can lead to heightened charges and penalties.
Possession with intent to distribute: Holding significant amounts of drugs with the clear intent to sell or distribute them, as evidenced by factors like packaging, large amounts of cash, or other paraphernalia.
Involvement of minors: Recruiting or using minors in drug-related activities, or selling drugs near schools or other areas frequented by minors, can result in more severe charges.
Drug Laws Governing the State of Texas
Texas drug laws are strict and cover a wide range of drug-related offenses, including possession, sale, manufacture, and trafficking of controlled substances.
These laws are primarily governed by the Texas Controlled Substances Act, which classifies drugs into different penalty groups based on their potential for abuse and medical value.
1. Penalty Groups: Texas drug laws classify controlled substances into four penalty groups (PG), with each group having different penalties based on the type and amount of the drug involved.
a. Penalty Group 1 (PG1): This group includes highly addictive and dangerous drugs such as cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, and opioids like oxycodone and hydrocodone.
b. Penalty Group 2 (PG2): This group contains drugs like ecstasy, MDMA, and synthetic cannabinoids.
c. Penalty Group 3 (PG3): This group comprises drugs with a lower potential for abuse, including anabolic steroids, Valium, and Xanax.
d. Penalty Group 4 (PG4): This group includes drugs with a relatively low potential for abuse, like compounds containing small amounts of codeine or opium.
2. Marijuana: Texas law treats actual marijuana (the leafy stuff, not compounds extracted from it) outside the penalty groups. (It also spells it “marihuana.”)
3. Simple Possession: Drug possession charges in Texas depend on the type and amount of the controlled substance. Penalties range from a Class B misdemeanor (up to 180 days in jail and a fine of up to $2,000) for small amounts of marijuana PG3 or PG4 drugs, to a first-degree felony (5 to 99 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000) for large amounts of PG1 drugs.
4. Sale and Distribution: Selling or distributing drugs is a more severe offense in Texas. Penalties depend on the penalty group, the amount of the drug, and the circumstances of the offense. For example, selling less than one gram of a PG1 drug is a state jail felony, punishable by 180 days to 2 years in jail and a fine of up to $10,000. Selling more significant amounts can result in enhanced first-degree felony charges, with even more severe penalties. Penalties are based on the amount and type of drug involved.
5. Drug Paraphernalia: At the other end of the punishment spectrum, it is illegal in Texas to possess, sell, or distribute drug paraphernalia—items used for ingesting, manufacturing, or packaging drugs. This offense is generally charged as a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of up to $500.
6. Driving Under the Influence of Drugs: Driving while intoxicated by drugs, including prescription medications, is illegal in Texas and can result in severe penalties, including license suspension, fines, and even jail time.
Texas drug laws are complex, and penalties can vary significantly depending on the specific circumstances of each case. If you are facing drug charges in Texas, it is essential to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney to protect your rights and navigate the legal system effectively.
We Defend Clients in Houston Who Have Been Charged With Various Kinds of Drug Crimes.
At Bennett & Bennett, we are dedicated to defending clients throughout Houston who have been charged with a variety of drug crimes.
Our experienced team of Houston drug crime lawyers understands the complexities and nuances of drug-related offenses, and we are committed to providing the best possible defense for each client we represent.
Some of the drug crimes we handle include:
1. Possession of a controlled substance
2. Possession with intent to distribute, deliver, or sell
3. Drug trafficking or distribution
4. Drug manufacturing or cultivation
5. Prescription drug fraud
6. Drug conspiracy charges
7. Possession or sale of drug paraphernalia
8. Driving under the influence of drugs
No matter the type of drug charge you are facing, our knowledgeable and skilled drug attorneys will work tirelessly to build a strong defense and protect your rights.
We understand the devastating impact that a drug conviction can have on your life, including the potential for imprisonment, fines, and a permanent criminal record.
That's why we are committed to pursuing every legal avenue and strategy to secure the best possible outcome for your case.
If you or a loved one has been charged with a drug crime in Houston or the surrounding counties, don't hesitate to contact our experienced team of drug crime lawyers for a consultation.
We will evaluate your case, explain your rights, and help you navigate the complex legal process ahead. Let us put our expertise and dedication to work for you in your fight against drug charges.
Among the Best Criminal Lawyers for Drug Charges in Houston
Mark Bennett is a highly experienced and skilled criminal defense attorney, specializing in drug-related offenses. With a proven track record of success in representing clients facing drug charges, he has earned a reputation as one of the top criminal lawyers in his field.
If you or a loved one is facing drug charges, it's crucial to have a knowledgeable and dedicated attorney like Mark Bennett on your side to navigate the complex legal system, protect your rights, and fight for the best possible outcome in your case.
Mark Bennett understands the intricacies of drug laws and is well-versed in the most effective defense strategies for clients facing drug charges.
He is committed to providing personalized and aggressive representation, ensuring that each client receives the highest level of legal counsel and support throughout their case.
Some key factors that set Mark Bennett apart as a top criminal lawyer for drug charges include:
1. Expertise And Experience: Mark Bennett has extensive experience representing clients facing a wide range of drug charges, from simple possession to more serious offenses like drug trafficking and manufacturing.
His in-depth knowledge of drug laws and the legal system enables him to build strong defenses and achieve favorable outcomes for his clients.
2. Dedication To Client Success: Mark Bennett is committed to the success of each client, working tirelessly to ensure that their rights are protected and their case is resolved in the best possible manner.
He understands the life-altering consequences of a drug conviction and is dedicated to helping clients avoid or minimize the impact of such an outcome.
3. Reputation For Excellence: Over the years, Mark Bennett has earned a reputation for excellence in the field of criminal defense.
His commitment to client success, combined with his expertise and experience, has made him a go-to attorney for those facing drug charges.
If you are facing drug charges and need an experienced and skilled attorney, consider Mark Bennett. His knowledge, dedication, and reputation for success make him a top criminal lawyer for drug charges, and he will work tirelessly to protect your rights and secure the best possible outcome in your case.
I have been arrested for a drug offense. What should I do?
If you've been arrested for a drug offense, it's essential to take the situation seriously and follow these steps to protect your rights and ensure the best possible outcome:
1. Remain Silent: Exercise your right to remain silent. Anything you say can be used against you in court. Politely inform the officers that you wish to remain silent and would like to speak with an attorney.
2. Do Not Consent to a Search: If the police ask to search your vehicle, home, or person, you have the right to refuse. If they conduct a search without your consent or a warrant, your drug-crime attorney may be able to challenge the legality of the search later.
3. Stay Calm and Respectful: Treat law enforcement officers with respect and do not resist arrest, even if you believe you are innocent. Resisting arrest can lead to additional charges and make your situation worse.
4. Contact an Attorney: As soon as possible, reach out to a criminal-defense attorney who specializes in drug offenses. An experienced lawyer can help you navigate the legal process, protect your rights, and work towards the best possible outcome for your case.
5. Do Not Discuss Your Case: Avoid discussing your case with anyone, including friends, family members, or cellmates, as these conversations could be used against you in court.
6. Attend all Court Appearances: Make sure you attend all court appearances and follow any conditions of your release, such as posting bail, avoiding contact with certain individuals, or submitting to drug testing.
7. Gather Evidence and Witnesses: Work with your attorney to gather any evidence or witnesses that may help your case. This may include surveillance footage, phone records, or testimony from individuals who can corroborate your story or challenge the prosecution's evidence.
8. Consider Your Options: Your attorney will discuss your options with you, which may include negotiating a plea deal, going to trial, or seeking a dismissal of the charges. Carefully consider the pros and cons of each option before making a decision.
Remember, every drug offense case is different, and it's crucial to have the best drug-crime attorney by your side to guide you through the process and advocate for your best interests.
Can I Have My Drug Possession Arrest Record Expunged in Houston?
In Texas, it may be possible to have your drug possession arrest record expunged under certain circumstances.
Expungement (also known as expunction) is a legal process that allows eligible individuals to have their criminal records erased as if the arrest or charge never occurred.
However, not everyone will qualify for an expungement, and the process can be complicated. Here are some key factors to consider when determining if you may be eligible for an expungement in Houston:
1. Dismissal or Acquittal: If your drug possession case was dismissed or you were acquitted (found not guilty) at trial, you might be eligible for an expungement. In these situations, you can petition the court to have the arrest and any related records removed from your criminal history. There may be a waiting period, depending on the specific drug offense and the outcome of your case.
2. Completion of Diversion Program: In some instances, individuals charged with drug possession may be eligible to participate in a diversion program, such as the Harris County drug court program. If you successfully complete the program, your drug possession arrest record may be eligible for expungement.
Separately, if you have been convicted or have received deferred-adjudication probation, you may be eligible for an order of nondisclosure.
Orders of nondisclosure are similar to expungements, but they do not completely erase your criminal record; instead, they restrict access to your record by certain entities, such as private employers and landlords.
It's essential to note that expungement eligibility and requirements can vary depending on your specific situation and the details of your case.
To determine if you are eligible for an expungement or order of nondisclosure in Harris County, it's best to consult with an experienced criminal defense attorney familiar with local expungement laws and procedures.
They can evaluate your case and guide you through the process, increasing your chances of successfully clearing your record.
Some of Our Results Fighting Drug Cases
Every case is different, of course, but some of the results we have obtained as defense counsel on drug cases in Texas include:
Suppression of evidence;
Felonies reduced to misdemeanors;
Misdemeanors dismissed; and
Not Guilty verdicts in cases involving multiple kilograms of cocaine in both state and federal courts.
Have an Award-Winning Team on Your Side
Mark Bennett is AV rated (“preeminent”) by Martindale, has been selected as a “Super Lawyer” since 2012, is Board Certified in Criminal Law since 2012, is a Past President of the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association, and was awarded Lawyer of the Year by the Harris County Criminal Lawyers Association.
What We Can Do For You
Bennett & Bennett has been defending people with creativity and compassion since 1995. Here are some of the key things that we do for our clients:
1. Evaluate The Case: We carefully review the details of your case to identify any potential weaknesses in the prosecution's evidence or violations of your constitutional rights, such as an illegal search and seizure or improper police conduct.
2. Develop a Defense Strategy: Based on our evaluation of your case, we will develop a tailored defense strategy to challenge the prosecution's evidence, highlight any weaknesses in their case, and present the best possible arguments on your behalf.
3. Negotiate With The Prosecution: We may engage in negotiations with the prosecuting attorney to reach a favorable plea bargain, which may involve reduced charges, lesser penalties, or even the dismissal of your case in exchange for your acceptance of specific conditions, such as drug treatment or community service.
4. Represent You in Court: If your case goes to trial,we will advocate for you in court by presenting compelling arguments, cross-examining prosecution witnesses, and introducing evidence that supports your defense. Their goal is to create reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors and obtain a not-guilty verdict.
5. Guide You Through The Legal Process: The criminal justice system can be confusing and intimidating, especially for individuals facing drug charges. We will help you understand the process, explain your rights, and keep you informed about the progress of your case.
6. Protect Your Rights: Throughout the legal process, we will ensure that your constitutional rights are protected and that you are treated fairly by law enforcement and the courts.
7. Assist With Post-Conviction Matters: If you have been convicted of a drug offense, we can help with post-conviction matters, such as appealing the conviction or seeking habeas corpus relief.
8. Assist With Expunctions: If you have been acquitted, or if your drug case was dismissed, we can help you by applying for expungement of your criminal record.
Possible Defenses in Drug Cases in Houston
There are five basic defenses to a drug charge:
1. I didn’t possess it. Possession requires exercising control, and if you don’t exercise control over the thing, you don’t possess it.
2. I didn’t know I possessed it. Drug-possession charges require knowing exercise of control. For example, if you are driving a car with drugs in the trunk, the government may not be able to prove that you knew the drugs were there.
3. It wasn’t drugs. Obviously, the government has to prove that the drugs were drugs. Sometimes because of laboratory error they are unable to.
4. I didn’t know it was drugs.
5. The state violated the law to make its case against me. If the government violated the law, for example by searching your car illegally, the evidence that they obtained as a result cannot be used against you.
Top drug-defense lawyers know that there are other ways to make a drug case go away—for example, by getting the court to order the State to disclose the identity of an informant, and having the State refuse.
These are beyond the scope of this page; once you’ve hired the best drug-crime defense lawyer for your case, he or she should be able to lay out the strategy that has the best chance of clearing your name.
Frequently Asked Questions about Drug Charges in Houston TX
What Is The Average Jail Time For A Drug Possession Charge?
The average jail time for a drug possession charge in Texas can vary greatly depending on several factors, such as the type and amount of the controlled substance, the defendant's prior criminal record, and whether there were any aggravating circumstances involved.
A first offender in possession of a small amount of marijuana might expect probation at most; a habitual offender with kilos of cocaine and a gun is going to have to fight to keep from going to prison for years.
Can I Go To Jail For Selling Fake Drugs?
Yes. “Simulated controlled substances” are governed by chapter 482 of the Texas Health and Safety Code. Such a substance is defined as “a substance that is purported to be a controlled substance, but is chemically different from the controlled substance it is purported to be.”
How Often Do Drug Charges Get Dropped At A Trial?
The likelihood of drug charges being dropped at trial varies depending on several factors, including the strength of the evidence, the competence and reputation of the defense attorney, and the specific circumstances of the case. Often a case gets dropped at trial because the prosecutor has been bluffing, and a fearless defense lawyer has called his or her bluff. We can’t quantify this.